Local militia in Adamawa State has driven Boko Haram militants out of Mubi, a key town in the northeast state, nearly two weeks after the town fell to the insurgents, the state governor and residents said Thursday.
A spokesperson for Governor Bala Ngilari told PREMIUM TIMES Thursday that Mubi is now “quite different from what it used to be”.
He said local vigilante, popularly called Civilian JTF, launched a daring night time attack on Boko Haram insurgents in Mubi and drove them out of town between Wednesday and Thursday.
The government said the operation received some support from the military.
The Defence Headquarters could not confirm the operation. Spokesperson, Chris Olukolade, could not be reached.
A military official, however, told PREMIUM TIMES the operation was not as “conclusive as claimed”.
But the Adamawa State government said the operation was successful and that Mubi is now free of Boko Haram.
“His Excellency, Governor Bala Ngilari, has confirmed that the combined efforts of the Civilian Vigilante and the Sarkin Bakan Gombi as well as the military has successfully chased away Boko Haram from Mubi town,” Phineas Elisha, the director, press, to Governor Ngilari, told PREMIUM TIMES.
He said: “Some of them(Boko Haram) ran away through Askira Uba and others through Mubi South and the situation in Mubi now is quite different from what it used to be.”
A journalist based in Yola, the Adamawa State capital, said Mr. Ngilari first made the disclosure while inspecting relief materials provided by the government for people displaced by Boko Haram in the captured towns.
A resident of Mubi, who is now in Yola, Abdulrazak Aide, had earlier informed PREMIUM TIMES that a vigilante group popularly known as “Yan Tauri” carried out an overnight raid on Mubi, killing many insurgents.
“Yan Tauri, under the tutelage of Sarkin Bakan Gombi, carried out a raid and killed many Boko Haram members,” he said.
Boko Haram captured Mubi October 30 in a daytime raid after attacking the military installation there, chasing soldiers and residents out of town, and killing many.
The group has made lightening wins in recent months, taking and holding towns in Adamawa and neighbouring Borno State, the hotbed of its five-year-old campaign.